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Iganga Residents Start Abandoning Farms over Rumours of Gold Discovery

Sadala Wandera, the Iganga Resident District Commissioner.

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A number of residents within Nakigo sub county, in Iganga district, have abandoned their farms in the wake of exciting rumours of rare minerals and gold being discovered within their area.

The residents told URN that a section of political leaders and energy ministry officials held several meetings in their area in 2021 and January 2022 , and briefed them that plans of processing compensation and disturbance allowances were underway, and therefore there was no need for them to continue ploughing the land.

Jabeth Mukose, a resident says that they underwent an evaluation process and the surveyors, alongside government valuers documented their particulars, only awaiting compensation. 

“The government valuers promised to process the compensation fees in a period of two months, which has since deterred most of us from tilling the land, but they have never returned and we live in a life of uncertainties,” he says. 

Asinansi Kyazike, a resident of Bugabwe village says that she is worried of being displaced after investing her earnings in agriculture. 

“We have taken long without receiving any credible information from the surveyors and it is hard for us to wholesomely invest in agriculture without prior knowledge on when they plan to resettle us,” she says. 

Private surveyors who spoke to URN on condition of anonymity stressed that land sampling on the viability of minerals in different villages within Nakigo sub-county were conducted and they registered positive results. However, the data was handed over to the directorate of survey and minerals for further scrutiny. 

Officials from the directorate of geological survey and mines confirm that viable rare minerals surveys were conducted in Bugweri, Mayuge, Iganga, Kaliro and Bugiri districts, but they declined to avail us with official statements on the same.

Meanwhile, Iganga’s resident district commissioner, Sadala Wndera says that responsible government agencies have not furnished his office with comprehensive details regarding the compensation procedures and he has since rallied project-affected persons to continue engaging in agriculture-related activities, as they await a way forward on the same. 

//cue in: “we had complaints...//

Cue out…pieces of land,"//

Available data indicates that Busoga sub-region is home to several hundred million tons of rare minerals ore scattered across the different districts.   

  

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